APHELION (Syllabus: GS Paper 1 – Geography)

News-CRUX-10     6th July 2024        
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Context: This year, Earth reached aphelion, its farthest point from the Sun, on July 6th, marking its annual orbital milestone.

Aphelion

  • About: It occurs around July 4 each year when Earth is farthest from the Sun, approximately 152.5 million kilometers away.
  • Perihelion: It happens around January 3 annually, marking the closest point between Earth and the Sun at about 147.5 million kilometers.
  • Elliptical Orbit: Earth's orbit around the Sun is elliptical due to gravitational interactions, causing varying distances between them.
  • Kepler's Laws: Johannes Kepler's laws of planetary motion, formulated in the 17th century, describe how planets move in elliptical orbits with the Sun at one focus.
  • Aphelion Day 2023: According to Kepler's laws, Earth's distance from the Sun fluctuates, culminating in Aphelion Day.
  • Circular Orbit Consequences: If Earth's orbit were perfectly circular, seasons would be more uniform in length.
  • Eccentric Orbit Impact: Increased eccentricity could lead to extreme seasonal variations, affecting climates and potentially causing agricultural challenges.
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